Bright future tipped for Callie’s Delight

Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk

Callie’s Delight’s star continued to rise at Alexandra Park on Thursday when she accounted for a small but select field in the Welcome Back Fans Of The Park – We Missed You Handicap Pace (2200m).

The John and Joshua Dickie-trained mare began well from her 10m mark to take a sit behind Yorkshire, before driver Joshua Dickie elected to press forward and take an early lead.

The pair dictated terms throughout and were able to hold out the challenge of her rivals to win by a neck over Yorkshire, with a further head back to On The Cards in third.

“Although it was only a four horse field, it was a pretty tidy field with a class horse like On The Cards in there,” Joshua Dickie said.

“They are pretty tactical races with those small fields. They can be a bit tricky, but I felt like I had a decent chance in the race, so I tried to drive her accordingly.”

The daughter of Bettor’s Delight has been in fine form this preparation, posting two wins and a placing from just the three starts.

“She was a bit stiff the week before at Cambridge, she didn’t get much of a go,” Dickie said.

“But she has come back really well this prep. She is a lovely mare and super consistent. She is a pleasure to have around.”

Dickie said Callie’s Delight has a bright future ahead of her and he believes she is capable of stepping up to Group One company later this year.

“Hopefully later in the year we can try and find some mares races for her,” Dickie said. “I think she has shown us that she can be competitive against the nicer mares.

“She would need a good trip, but I think she would follow good speed and it would be nice to see her racing in the Queen of Hearts (Gr.1, 2200m) later in the year. That would be a good goal for her.”

The Dickie silks were to the fore once again later on the card when stable junior driver Craig Smith reined home Tricky Ric to victory in the ‘Creatine’ At Nevele R Stud Handicap Trot (2200m).

The stable looked to have the trifecta all sewn up, however, race favourite Kay Cee broke in the final stages of the race when threatening for the lead.

“It probably cost him winning really,” Dickie said. “He has had his small little issues and it is something that we need to work on, but the other two raced really well.”

While disappointed not to have won behind Kay Cee, Dickie said he was pleased to get the quinella with Tricky Ric and Sertorius.

“That was penalty free for Tricky Ric tonight, so he will be off the front again at Auckland in a fortnight,” Dickie said.

“He is a nice little horse. He has done a great job and Craig drove him really well tonight. That was great for him to get the win.

“He is owned by Dad and a good friend of his, Richard Bright. It was a great win for them.”

Dickie was also pleased with Sertorius’ efforts and he thinks the six-year-old gelding is in for a good winter campaign.

“Zac (Butcher) drove him perfectly tonight. He had a trip to win it, but Zac just said he couldn’t get around the last bend as good.

“He is just a consistent old trotter. He will get a cheque every week. He will be a handy trotter through the winter.”

Meanwhile, earlier on the card stablemate Daisy Hill put in plenty of work in her 2200m contest, but her efforts told in the last 50m when she was headed by Tears Of Joy.

“She has just started to get her confidence back a little bit,” Dickie said. “She did a lot of work tonight and just got tired.

“I was really pleased with her run. When you had to get around them as fast as what she did and sit outside them from the half-mile it is never easy, and she only just got beaten in the last bit. She went really well.”

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